Some pro AV solution providers see IoT as a legitimate opening for growth and are making moves to cash in, while others are frozen scared or ignoring the indicators that the opportunity is real. Rest assured, the opportunity is very real.
Last year, a survey conducted by analyst group Gartner indicated that 43% of enterprises were planning to implement an IoT solution by the end of the year. Bain predicted that annual revenues could reach $450 billion in 2020 for those companies supplying IoT hardware, software and related solutions. One of the reasons for the projected growth of IoT is that it can be leveraged in every industry and become a part of nearly every solution—including digital signage.
Digital Signage gets smarter
Thanks to smarter connected devices, it’s now possible to create extraordinary digital signage solutions. Take, for instance, a gas station/convenience store. Smart surveillance cameras can be used to identify the paths customers take throughout the store and determine where customers dwell the longest. Digital signage can then be strategically placed to get optimal results, even adjusting content to match the type and amount of traffic at any point in the day.
Now let’s add more intelligence from some additional “things.” Beacon technology can be deployed within the store to track customers. Assuming those customers have opted into a loyalty program or a similar offering from the store, the purchase history of customers can be integrated. As customers walk throughout the store, digital signage can present content that’s a perfect match to the demographics and personal tastes of these customers.
Let’s go further and add intelligent gas pumps that sense a customer pulling up and begin delivering digital content. Tied to video cameras that can identify gender, the content could change depending on the customer. That same purchase history we mentioned earlier can also be used to identify if a customer is gassing up along a road trip, and content can adjust to meet the needs of a wary or hungry traveler.
The future of digital signage is now
As we connect more “things,” a bigger and better story can be told through digital signage. These examples are not far off from being actual implementations. Today, Ingram Micro has all the technology and expertise to build such solutions, but you can’t let the complexity of these solutions scare you away. You also can’t think that the core technology you sell today will be enough for you to get by in the future.
What you sell today is only going to be one small piece of a larger solution. You must alter your business to embrace other technologies and sell holistic solutions. If you don’t, you’ll miss the IoT opportunity and let others deliver these solutions to your customers.